Family of hereditary regents to the shogunate of Japan who exercised actual power from 1199 to 1333.
Hōjō Tokimasa (1138–1215) joined the cause of Minamoto Yoritomo against Taira Kiyomori , then ruler of Japan. Together they prevailed, and Yoritomo became Japan's new ruler, taking the title of shogun . Tokimasa's daughter married Yoritomo, and when Yoritomo died in 1199 Tokimasa became regent to Yoritomo's heir, his own grandson. The position of shogunal regent became hereditary; this office oversaw the constables and tax collectors that the shogunate placed in each province. The system worked well through the first half of the 13th century; its decline came about after resources had been depleted defending Japan against two Mongol invasions and because of the personal failings of the last Hōjō regent. Hōjō rule ended when Ashikaga Takauji captured Kyōto in the name of the emperor Go-Daigo and the Ashikaga family assumed the title of shogun. See also Kamakura period .